Last hit out in mountains continues final Tour de France preparations at Dauphine

Sun 11 Jun 2017

ORICA-SCOTT have enjoyed a last hit out in the mountains for the final stage of the Criterium du Dauphine as they begin the final count down to the Tour de France. 

Paris-Nice stage winner Simon Yates finished 13th on the stage to move into 13th overall, whilst fellow climbers Esteban Chaves and Roman Kreuziger also sharpened their form in an early breakaway.

“Some guys came here still with some work to do ahead of the Tour de France,” Lapage said. “That’s no a secret, we have had some injuries and guys coming back after a period of no racing.”

“It was our main objective in coming here and we can say that all of our riders have come out of the Dauphine better than they came in and that’s the most important thing.

“There is still some work to do but we are right on schedule. Everyone can go home from here knowing they did the work they had to do. 

“We still have three weeks until the Tour de France starts and six weeks until the end of the Tour. The first ten days of the Tour can be used to get the final percentage for the climbers in our team. For the guys who are already 100%, it can make it a long Tour.”

How it happened:

The final stage of Criterium du Dauphine promised to be action packed and it didn’t disappoint.

The stage launched straight into the first of four climbs within just 115km and a big breakaway of 24 formed with Chaves and Kreuziger there for ORICA-SCOTT.

As the attacks came from overall challengers behind, the front group split further with both ORICA-SCOTT riders still present at the front as it reduced down to nine riders. The pressure on the bunch had it whittled down to just 30 riders before the top of the first climb. 

Just 25km into the stage and the situation changed again. Kreuziger and Chaves returned to the peloton to join teammates Yates, Damien Howson, Jack Haig and Daryl Impey.

A solo rider, Tony Gallopin (Lotto-Soudal), survived from the early break but there was no rest behind. A chase of seven, including Yates of ORICA-SCOTT, set off but the overall challengers attacked race leader Porte to isolated him from teammates and brought the race back together at the front. 

Valverde and Aru drove ahead as the GC group fractured even further. Kreuziger and Yates were still there for ORICA-SCOTT.  The moves continued as Froome attacked the group and as Yates responded, Porte dropped off the pace.

The Froome group caught Valverde and Aru on the final climb but the chase proved too much for Yates who lost touch immediately after, eventually crossing the line 4minutes 43seconds down on Jakob Fuglsang (Astana) who took the stage and overall victory.

Criterium du Dauphine – Stage 8 Results:

1. Jakob Fuglsang (Astana Pro Team) 3:26:20
2. Daniel Martin (Quickstep Floors) +0:12
3. Louis Meitjes (UAE Team Emirates) +0:27

Criterium du Dauphine – Final General Classification:

1. Jakob Fuglsang (Astana Pro Team) 29:05:54
2. Richie Porte (BMC Racing) 0:10
3. Daniel Martin (Quickstep Floors) 1:32